MCL/Medial Knee

What is medial knee pain?

The knee is one of the largest and most complex joints in the body.  This joint joins the thigh bone (femur) to the shin bone (tibia).  There are also two other bones making the knee: the smaller bone running alongside the tibia (fibula) and the kneecap (patella).

Medial knee pain occurs on the inner side of the knee, where the medial collateral ligament (MCL) meets the knee joint.  This pain can involve a number of muscles within the medial knee area, as well as the MCL.  The MCL is a thick band of tissue that runs down the inner part of the thigh bone (femur) to a point on the shinbone (tibia) about 4 to 6 inches from the knee.  If any of these muscles get tight or torn, it causes pain in the knee.

Common Symptoms

When experiencing a medial knee injury, you may notice:

  • Pain, ranging from mild to severe
  • Stiffness
  • Swelling
  • Tenderness along the inside of the knee
  • A feeling that the knee may give way under stress or may lock or catch

Causes

Medial knee injuries generally occur when the knee is hit directly on the outside.  This causes the ligaments on the inside of the knee to stretch, which can tear them.  It is not uncommon for athletes to suffer tears of the MCL.  Injury to the MCL can also occur due to repeated stress, or repetitive movements. 

Treatment

If the pain is from an injury, chiropractic adjustment can help to restore proper functioning of the joint to reduce the risk of further injury.  Your chiropractor would work with your body to keep muscles and joints moving as they heal, as well as to keep and gain as much strength within the joint as possible throughout the process.

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